Pacific coast clam fisheries

Pacific coast clam fisheries

319 accounts school; the book has 125 tables, many of which occupy two or more pages. Such data may be useful raw material for economic studies, but ...

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319

accounts school; the book has 125 tables, many of which occupy two or more pages. Such data may be useful raw material for economic studies, but anyone who bought the book in the expectation of finding a systematic economic analysis of Indian fisheries would be disappointed. To put it bluntly, one has the impression that this book has been made by putting together the texts of various lectures given over some years, making figares from slides which had been projected when the lectures were given, and adding a large number of tables, but this has been done without serious effort at revision. Doubtless many of the typographical errors are the responsibility of the publisher, but the errors of English are not. Of much greater importance, however, is the failure to up-date the contents. The work

is written in ‘doctrinaire fashion, with reference to a thesis expressed in the words “fisheries resources are superior to land-based agricultural resources” and again “fish and other forms of seafood which are available in large quantities in the oceans of the world would be able to meet the food needs of mankind” and finally “in this chapter, it is delineated how the marine fisheries’ resources are superior to land-based agricultural resources and how they can support the whole population of the world”. These statements, of course, cannot be defended; they are an echo of a declaration, of the early 1950’s that the seas were man’s last food-supply frontier. Indeed, many of the author’s bibliographic references - especially those in support of this thesis -are of the 1950’s and 1960’s. There is no doubt that development of aquaculture and mariculture will increase the fisheries’ ccntribu:ion to protein supplies for human consumption in the future and that the catch from free-living stocks could he increased, but these prospects shou!d he seen in reasonable perspective. Unfortunately, Professor Rao fails of this obligation. G.L. KESTEVEN 12 0 ‘Brie? 6 Road Hursfville2220 New South iyoks Australia -

PACIFIC COAST CLAM FISHERIES Pacific

Coast Clam Fisheries, T.D. Schink, K.A. McGraw, and K. Chew. Washington Sea Grant Communications, University of Washington, 1983, 16 tables, 19 figs., iv + 72 pp., price $4.50 (US funds).

The resources of clams and similar beach-dwelling moiluscs have especial interest for several reasons. First, because they are perhaps the resources of the sea which were first exploited by man. Secondly, becauee they occupy a habitat which is extremely variable, the zone between land and ocean where the effects of tidal rise and fall are always present and the violence of

the seas most manifest. Presumably it is because of this environmental variability that the abundance of these organisms fluctuates so very considerably. StiIl further, the zone they inhabit is itself highly vulnerable to human activities, directly to exploitation, both commercial and amateur, and indicectely through pollution and other interference with the habitat. All these features ace illustrated in this small technical report from the Washington Sea Grant Program of the College of Ocean and Fishery Sciences of the University of Washington, It is a compendium of information on the morphology and anatomy of eight species of clams taken on the west coast of the United States, with historical, technological and other information with regard to commercial and amateur exploitation of these resources. Each fishery is dealt with in standard fashion with an account of its history, of its present status and some indication of its future. No attempt is made at stock assessment or population analysis; as claimed in the Introduction, the report provides pertinent information on the industry. A special feature is the set of statistical tables, some of which have data from the beginning of this century. These tables present extremely interesting evidence with respect to fluctuations and trends in these fisheries. S.L. KESTEVEN 12 O’Brien’sRood Hurstville2220 New South Wales Aawtmlia

CORAL REEF FISHES The Larvae of Indo-Pacific Coral Reef Fishes, by J.M. Leis and D.S. Rennis. University N.S.W. Press, Sydney, and University Hawaii Press, Hawaii, 1983, 269 pp.. 75 figs., $A 23.95, ISBN 0868401293. The Larvae of Indo-Pacific Comi Reef Fishes, written hy J.M. Leis and D.S. Renni:, is well done and long overdue. Prior to publication of this book, non-specialists who desired to identify larvae of Indo-Pacific reef fishes had three recourses. First, one could go to a specialist for help. Although the published literature is sparse, it has long been obvious that a few workers in the field, such as Leis, could readily identify most larvae to the family level. Second, one could sift through a fragmented and frustratingly non-comprehensive lilerature, in the hopes of “guestimating” the identity of a specimen. Much of this literature, unfortunately, is in Japanese, so that one was often reduced to simply looking at the pictures. Finally, there ace a few identification guides t,o fish larvae already available, for places like the North Sea. Using these to identify the larvae of Indo-Pacific fishes is a bit “iffy”, but one could hope that family characteristics were conservative. Leis and